Matthaus criticizes Bayern for Lewandowski case

Bayern legend Lothar Matthaus said Monday that the club should have started negotiations with 33-year-old Polish striker Robert Lewandowski much earlier to extend his contract.

After Saturday’s game against VfL Wolfsburg in the last match of the Bundesliga season, Lewandowski admitted in an interview that “it may have been his last appearance in Bayern’s shirt”.

The club authorities officially said that Lewandowski had refused their offer, while according to the striker the club hadn’t sent him a proposal to renew his contract.

The Bundesliga’s top scorer, whose deal is valid until June 2023, is strongly linked to FC Barcelona. According to German media, he has even informed Bayern that he is willing to join the Catalans.

Matthaus, who led Germany to FIFA World Cup title in 1990, believes that Bayern bosses have made a huge mistake.

“They should have talked to him several months ago and sent a very clear signal that they want to keep him. But it appears that they negotiated with [Erling] Haaland and fought for him until they got his rejection,” Matthaus claimed on Monday.

According to Bayern’s policy, players over 30 years old are only offered one-year contract extensions.

“I would have done everything to extend the contract with the two-time World Footballer of the Year. They should have made an exception for him and despite his age. There is a difference between players and sometimes you must make exceptions in life,” Matthaus concluded.

Matthaus’ former Bayern teammate Thomas Helmer shared that opinion.

“The club showed no respect for Lewandowski. They missed a good moment to propose him a new contract. If they sent a proposal to [Manuel] Neuer and [Thomas] Muller, in Lewandowski’s case they should have done the same,” Helmer said in an interview for Polish site Sportowe Fakty.

“Lewandowski is a top striker. If he leaves, Bayern will have huge problems finding his successor. I don’t see anyone who would guarantee as many goals as the Pole,” he added. ■

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